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  • ‘Thanksgivukkah’? Not quite

    By David Suissa

    November 25, 2013 | 6:22 pm

    It’s taken American Jews a good century to fully absorb the miraculous idea that this country is unlike any other that Jews have experienced. After 2,000 years of feeling insecure no matter where we pitched our tents, the people of Moses finally found safe harbor in the land of...

  • Iran no-spoiler alert

    By Marty Kaplan

    November 25, 2013 | 10:36 am

    So where are we in the Iran narrative?

    I mean no disrespect to the victims of Iran’s terrorist clients, or the existential fears of Israelis and world Jewry, or U.S. security interests in the Middle East by calling it a narrative. Real events do happen in the real world, but...

  • Clergy reflect on Proposition 8

    October 30, 2013 | 12:37 pm

    On a wall of the Autry National Center — among Los Angeles Jewish immigrant artifacts, biographies of Hollywood Jewry, above a case of kippot from Uganda — a white banner proclaims in crimson letters: “Beth Chayim Chadashim, Jewish, Gay & Lesbian & Proud.” The banner, used in gay...

  • Open Judaism

    By David Suissa

    October 16, 2013 | 2:05 pm

    There’s a nasty food fight going on right now in the Orthodox world between the stringent groups and the more open ones.

    This latest brouhaha was ignited when the “open Orthodox” Yeshivat Chovevei Torah (YCT) yeshiva invited non-Orthodox rabbis and scholars to a roundtable...

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  • Caredim in church? The wackiest result from the Pew ‘Jewish Americans’ survey

    October 1, 2013 | 1:25 pm

    The new Pew Research Center’s new study “A Portrait of Jewish Americans” offers a treasure trove of survey data on American Jewry. It’s a particularly valuable service since the Jewish Federations of North America opted not do a repeat of the decennial National Jewish Population...

  • Ethiopian aliyah to end Aug. 28, Jewish Agency says

    June 25, 2013 | 2:53 pm

    The Jewish Agency is preparing to end mass aliyah from Ethiopia with two final flights consisting of 400 immigrants on Aug. 28.

    The Jewish Agency emissary to Ethiopia, Asher Seyum, made the announcement in a brief letter, saying the Jewish Agency will hand over its aid compounds...

  • South African Jews find a home in L.A.

    By Tom Teicholz

    June 13, 2013 | 10:16 am

    How far can you travel in less than an hour? All the way to Capetown, South Africa, and back, if you are talking to Leora Raikin, a third-generation South African Jew who has lived in Los Angeles for the past 15 years. Raikin will speak about the Jews of South Africa on June 18 at...

  • Stone-walling

    By Shmuel Rosner

    May 22, 2013 | 11:50 am

    In the last two years, the Western Wall in Jerusalem — also known as the Kotel — has become a place of controversy as much as of worship. It’s the site of a battle that has long been waged by a group called Women of the Wall, who are demanding they be able to pray in the women’s...

  • How the Jews changed L.A.

    By Tom Tugend

    May 1, 2013 | 10:12 am

    “Los Angeles today is the bellwether of American style and taste and culture. Los Angeles Jewry is the bellwether of American Jewish life. … Los Angeles Jews are God’s people and they live in the City of the Angels.”

    — “Guide to Jewish Los Angeles,” published by the Jewish...

  • Western wall compromise raises hopes, but still faces obstacles

    April 10, 2013 | 9:35 am

    Natan Sharansky presented what could be a historic proposal to add a space for egalitarian prayer to the Western Wall on Tuesday.

    Israeli religious pluralism activists, however, fear that the proposal will take years to implement and could face roadblocks that prevent it from...

  • Q&A: Photographer Gazin gives a unique glimpse of L.A.’s Iranian Jewry

    By Karmel Melamed

    February 25, 2013 | 5:46 am

    In November 2006 I had the opportunity to interview the American Jewish artist and photographer Shelley Gazin. Since 2001 she has been slowly capturing various unique aspects of Iranian Jewish life here in Los Angeles through her remarkable photographs. Gazin was given on many...

  • Anti-Semitic incidents rise by 5 percent in Britain

    February 7, 2013 | 11:03 am

    Anti-Semitic incidents in Britain rose 5 percent over the previous year, making 2012 the third highest number of incidents on record.

    The Community Service Trust, British Jewry's security unit, reported Thursday that there were 640 reported anti-Semitic incidents, compared to 608...

  • In Europe, big gaps exist among security precautions at Jewish institutions

    November 19, 2012 | 1:11 pm

    Within hours of Israel's assassination of a top Hamas commander, the situation room sprang into action, anticipating retaliatory attacks and preparing instructions to keep civilians out of harm's way.

    No, the room wasn't deep in a bunker beneath Jerusalem, but thousands of miles...

  • BBC correspondent slammed for ‘Jewish lobby’ tweet

    November 8, 2012 | 1:53 pm

    The umbrella organization of British Jewry criticized the BBC's correspondent in Washington for referring to the "Jewish lobby" in a tweet about the U.S. election.

    Katty Kay used the term in a question-and-answer session on Twitter, raising the ire of the Board of Deputies of...

  • In France, Marseille Jews look to Paris and worry that their calm may be fleeting

    October 17, 2012 | 1:34 pm

    At a time when Jewish institutions across France resemble military fortresses for their security, entering the great synagogue and main Jewish center of this picturesque city on the Mediterranean coast is as easy as pushing open the front door.

    The only obstacles on a recent...

  • Jordan’s King to address British Jewry

    September 12, 2012 | 3:22 pm

    King Abdullah of Jordan will address the Board of Deputies of British Jews at its annual dinner, the Jewish Chronicle reported. The November event’s theme is multiculturalism, interfaith and world peace, the newspaper said.

    King Abdullah’s father, the late King Hussein, attended the board’s annual dinner more than a decade ago.

    The Board of Deputies is the representative organization of British Jewry.

    Representatives of Britain’s Jewish community met in June with King Abdullah.

  • Fear and Gordis

    By Rob Eshman

    August 22, 2012 | 11:27 am

    For reasons I can’t quite understand, many leaders in the pro-Israel community continue to insist that the young generation of American Jews has abandoned Israel.

    That’s just not true. 

    “Ours is the first generation in which the centrality of Zion in Jewish dreams is...

  • U.S. Jewry faces challenge as national movements decline

    By Steven Windmueller

    August 1, 2012 | 11:42 am

    We are in the midst of one of the most significant downturns of traditional membership-based organizations in this country’s history.  Unions, service clubs, membership organizations and umbrella institutions are all reporting a decline in members and affiliates. Of particular...

  • British Jewry rips Church of England’s vote to support ‘inflammatory’ pro-Palestinian program

    July 11, 2012 | 10:16 am

    Britain’s organized Jewish community slammed the Church of England’s General Synod for endorsing an “inflammatory and partisan” pro-Palestinian program.

    The Synod on Tuesday passed a motion to support “the vital work” of the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and...

  • Elan Steinberg described as ‘great activist’ and ‘irreplaceable loss to world Jewry’

    April 10, 2012 | 11:49 am

    Tributes and statements of profound respect and admiration are pouring in for Elan Steinberg, former executive director of the World Jewish Congress, who died April 6 of complications from lymphatic cancer. He was 59.

    “Elan’s premature death will leave a huge void in the Jewish...

  • Responses to readers on the left

    March 21, 2012 | 2:52 pm

    I am devoting this column to responding to letters published in response to my last column, “Our Golden Calf” (March 9), because the topic is so important. If American Jewry’s embrace of leftism has not been a blessing for the Jews, then Jewish life is in trouble. On the other...

  • Examining unconventional Judaism at UCLA

    By Ryan Torok

    February 15, 2012 | 5:34 pm

    American Jewry is in transition, 20 speakers argued during “Looking for Judaism in [Un]Conventional Places,” a symposium at UCLA on Feb. 12-13. Scholars and academics discussed what Jews value, Jewish identity and which organizations are relevant today.

    Shawn Landres, CEO of...

  • Conference for art mavens reflects European Jewry’s niche-appeal trend

    August 15, 2011 | 9:39 pm

    The roomful of artists, musicians and cultural leaders let their imaginations run wild.

    Unencumbered by budgetary considerations or practical concerns, they dreamed up a theater partnership between Budapest and Bordeaux, a traveling photo exhibit on the idea of “kosher spaces”...

  • French Jewry rethinks its JCCs, with a focus on culture over ‘community’

    August 2, 2011 | 10:41 am

    It’s hard to think of a more innocuous word for most American Jews than “community.” But in France, things aren’t so simple.

    France’s national ethos frowns upon displays of ethnic difference. So for many French Jews, the word “community” conveys a sense of separatism...

  • Food flight: Perusing American Jewry’s past and present

    March 31, 2011 | 4:40 pm

    Two relatively new books tell the story of American Jewry, weaving together its past and present by examining tradition and making it relevant to today’s reader.

    Where Sue Fishkoff’s “Kosher Nation: Why More and More of America’s Food Answers to a Higher Authority” (Schocken,...

  • Amid rancorous debate, a voice for American Jewry pushes civility

    March 8, 2011 | 3:28 pm

    When disagreement among American Jews on Israel-related issues runs deep, how does an organization that bills itself as the representative voice of the organized American Jewish community formulate policies and priorities?

    By emphasizing civility in public discourse, for starters.

    ...
  • Baltimore Jewry shows sharp rise in a decade

    January 13, 2011 | 3:21 pm

    The number of Jewish households in the greater Baltimore has grown substantially in the past dozen years.

    A new demographic study of the Baltimore Jewish community also shows that Baltimore’s Jewish population has jumped by 2,000 people since the last survey, conducted in 1999.

    ...
  • View on Eisen From L.A.: Thumbs Up

    By Amy Klein

    April 27, 2006 | 8:00 pm

    Local reaction was positive -- with an element of wait and see -- to the choice of Stanford professor Arnold Eisen as the new, de facto leader of the Conservative moment. Eisen, who isn't a rabbi, will take over this summer as chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary in New...

  • Sharonism vs. Building a Wall

    By Ron Unz

    May 16, 2002 | 8:00 pm

    Any attempt to resolve the crisis in the Middle East forces us -- the American people and American Jewry -- to appraise the motives and the ultimate goals of the leaders involved.

    Endless disputes have raged over whether Yasser Arafat and the other Arab leaders merely seek a...

  • Young Man on Campus

    By Marlene Adler Marks

    April 18, 2002 | 8:00 pm

    Last week I worried in this space that our college students were ill-equipped to defend American Jewry's pro-Israel position. I asked for a volunteer to explain what's going on. Luckily, Donald Cohen-Cutler, a UC Davis freshman and an international relations major, stepped up to the...

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